What if UConn two-time national champion Tristen Newton played for his home town team at UTEP? 

Maybe Newton stars at UTEP and they reach the NCAA Tournament for the first time in a decade plus. Maybe Rodney Terry (coach while Newton was a senior at Burges) prioritizes Newton at UTEP and develops him into an All CUSA player. Maybe Newton is immortalized in the Miner record books like his cousin Aaron Jones. Or, maybe Newton's career isn't able to reach its full potential at UTEP, thus keeping him from being a two-time champion. 

This is a scenario that got us thinking, what are the all-time what-if moments in El Paso history? Throughout the coming weeks, 600 ESPN El Paso will dive into an alternate reality with some of these 'what-if' situations across all sports. If you have a good suggestion for a top "what-if" moment in El Paso sports history, we encourage you to call into SportsTalk on 600 ESPN El Paso, message us your thoughts on our free mobile app or connect with us on X (formally Twitter), Instagram or Facebook on this topic.

Here are some of the starters out there!

What if Andy Dalton followed Mike Price to UTEP?

Yup, you read that right. Andy Dalton had to choose between UTEP and TCU. He chose the Horned Frogs and the rest was history. Remember those late 2000s UTEP teams under Price? If Dalton had made UTEP his choice, who knows what would've happened by the late 2000s.

What if Jim Paul never sold the El Paso Diablos?

The El Paso Diablos were an iconic Minor League Baseball team, thank in part to the marketing strategies of team owner Jim Paul. A few years after he sold the team, the Diablos were sold again but this time, they left town for Springfield, Missouri. What if Jim Paul kept his franchise? WOuld El Paso still be in the Texas League and playing at Cohen Stadium?

What if Ben Wallis was hired 10 years ago?

This isn't too far off since Wallis had success as an assistant coach fast with the NM State volleyball program. Maybe by 2024, we're talking about UTEP hanging multiple CUSA championship banners.

What if Isaac Hamilton stayed at UTEP?

This is one that hits hard for niche UTEP men's basketball fans. Tim Floyd's prized recruit Isaac Hamilton ended up at UCLA after getting his release from his NLI. What if he was a Miner instead?


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